Prosecutors say [Marcus Huffman] was on patrol March 18 when he met the woman after she was turned away from a club because she appeared intoxicated. Huffman is accused of offering her a ride, driving her to the substation and raping her.The 19-old-woman then went to a relative's home where she called 911 to report the rape. Among the three officers who responded was Officer Marcus Huffman.
Special Assistant Attorney General Erik Wallin said prosecutors have a video showing Huffman entering the substation with the woman, then leaving separately before the woman did.
In addition, prosecutors say they have recovered Huffman's semen from the woman's boxer shorts.
He was also the senior officer handling the complaint, and, according to RI Attorney General spokesman Michael Healey, "He later filed a report which we allege failed to include important facts, among which were any mention of the incident involving him and the victim."
Whenever survivors of sexual assault have discussed here their various difficulties with law enforcement, inevitably there are people who express shock at the stories of callousness, disbelief, and outright hostility with which some of us have been met when attempting to report a sex crime. Now I'm no cop-hater; my granddad was NYPD, and he was a great guy and a good cop who really enjoyed and cared about people. But it's also wise to remember that cops' badges don't magically imbue them with a particular sympathy for victims of sexual assault that the rest of the population (including the media, judges and juries, legislators, doctors, sportsmen and entertainers, crap hucksters, other cops, etc. etc. etc.) is largely lacking.
And, ya know, some rapists are cops, too. Some rape victims; some rape suspects. If they weren't cops, they'd be raping someone else, because that's what rapists do. But that there are rapists who are cops (and, inevitably, cops who protect rapist cops) makes things just that much more difficult for victims of rape, even if a cop wasn't the perpetrator.
You never know when you walk into a police station (or pick up a phone) to report a rape, whether you're going to get someone who's on your side, someone who treats you like a liar, someone who just doesn't care, or someone who might exploit your already-terrible situation to take further advantage of you. Those of us involved with victims' advocacy have heard plenty of stories in every category. That's a big question mark for victims to have to face.
The police culture, however, too often mimics the Catholic Church in its protection of dangerous men. Huffman had already been convicted of three misdemeanor counts of simple assault and had also been "suspended without pay for two days for skipping a closed-door hearing concerning a brutality complaint filed against him. At the time, he was accused of beating a 14-year-old boy with a night stick." He probably shouldn't have been on the force at all, and no way should he have been responding to rape calls (even if he hadn't been the stinking rapist).
Eradicating that big question mark starts with the police, who, at minimum, can't be sending known bullies to do the job of protecting and serving the victimized.